Date: 5/5/19 6:49 am From: David Irons <llsdirons...> Subject: [obol] Re: Wood Peewee or Olive Sided? Help!
The bird has a proportionally small head, small bill and longish tail. It is a Western Wood-Pewee. Olive-sided Flycatchers have disproportionally large heads and heavy bills, which along being broader at the shoulder makes them look top heavy and short-tailed. As Lars notes they have cleaner whiter throats. The “vest” usually looks streaky as well.
Based on the grungey throat I'd call this a WWPewee. OSFL typically show a bright, well defined triangle between the beak and breast. This is a good opportunity to point out how much better life can be for the birder when the object of our scrutiny shares a split second of sound with us. On two occasions this spring OSFL have burned substantial time on the Mt Tabor birdsong walks by sitting silently 100 feet above us. Lengthy discussions by 4-6 experienced birders in front of a captive audience of 3-4 dozen less opinionated observers has led to a weak consensus at best. The low morning sun was perhaps the primary exacerbation, making the whole ventral surface of the bird appear almost white.
I had a great eBird big day birding today, and am ready for my Portland Audubon Birdathon tomorrow, bicycling SE PDX with the Handle-barred Owls. I birded this morning with my wife Kelli Van Norman and Patty N at Pittock and ran into Nick M and Peyton who were having a crazy Warbler day. We all saw Townsends, Wilsons, OCs, Nashvilles, Black-throated Grays and tons of Tanagers. Kelli, Patty and I saw a MacGilivray’s (Thanks Patty!) as well as 5 flyover Cedar Waxwings. Nick and Peyton heard a Hermit Warbler, and after we split groups we looked hard for it but never found it.
Later I birded my favorite Portland spot Whitaker Ponds and had what I originally believed to be an Olive-sided Flycatcher. I got lots of pics, including one of it with a Red-tailed Hawk, but the darned thing never vocalized. I was sure with what I saw was a vest and the longish wings-to-tail ratio it was Olive-sided, but when I got home and looked at the pics I changed my ID to Western Wood-peewee, which I’ve seen at Whitaker before.